German kindergartens promote ‘sexual exploration rooms’ where children are encouraged to masturbate and touch each other

At least two nurseries in the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia have introduced the practice

editor: REMIX NEWS
author: Thomas Brooke

Daycare centers in Germany are under fire for promoting the use of “sexual exploration rooms” where young children are encouraged to touch themselves and engage in sexual games with other children.

In the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia, at least two nurseries are entertaining the idea of safe spaces where young children can retreat to masturbate, or as one daycare center in Kerpen puts it, “discover and satisfy themselves physically.”

German newspaper Die Welt reports how the nursery claims to offer “children freedom to try out childish sexuality,” insisting that “masturbation is something normal” and that the establishment considers allowing sexual self-gratification on its premises to be “of great importance.”

In another daycare center in the state, this time in the town of Rheinberg, “doctor games” are prepared in adjoining rooms for children to explore the bodies of others, the German newspaper reports. The rules issued by the nursery encourage children to pick those they wish to “explore” and urge them to do so “carefully,” telling them that “no objects are to be introduced into body orifices.”

Earlier this year in June, the German tabloid newspaper Bild reported on similar practices being encouraged in a daycare center in Hanover, which came to light after an email was sent to parents.

In a 10-point guidance note, the center told parents about its intention to introduce “doctor games” in which children can “pet and examine” themselves and others.

“All children, especially preschoolers, are aware of the places in the facility where nudity and body exploration can take place,” the guidance read.

“Each child decides for themselves whether and with whom they want to play physical and sexual games. Girls and boys pet and examine each other only as much as is comfortable for themselves and other children.”

The concept appeared to be supported by Pro Familia, the leading professional association on sexuality and partnership in Germany, which recently published recommendations to daycare centers encouraging the practice.

Following a public backlash, the Awo-Kita kindergarten in Hanover canceled the project after a spokesperson for the Ministry of Education in the Lower Saxony state capital said “the educational concept in this form endangers the well-being of the child.”

The CEO of the nursery group’s management company later claimed that the letter to parents had not been approved by the head office, Der Spiegel reported in July.

In North Rhine-Westphalia, however, the local government does not appear to be fazed by the practice. When asked by Die Welt about the idea of children being encouraged to masturbate and touch each other sexually, the state’s children’s ministry, led by Green Josefine Paul, claimed that “sexual behavior by children” could “not be prevented” and insisted it had no plans to contact the daycare centers within its remit to discuss the matter.

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